Pears in wine is a classic recipe, very festive and elegant. And, of course, pears perfectly pair with wine.
I want to share a somewhat simplified version of this gorgeous dessert. This recipe is more versatile than wine poached pears. Thus, you can also prepare the dish from apples, not only pears. Children can enjoy this no-alcohol vanilla-lavender poached fruits along with adults.
For this recipe you should choose ripe but firm pears and apples. In my experience, the pears need a little more time for cooking, but the apples should be removed from the syrup as soon as they became soft.
If you don’t have lavender flowers, you can add cinnamon, cloves, or star anise. These spices will bring its classic taste and aroma to the dessert.
Another good thing about Poached Pears and Apples is that you can prepare the fruits in advance and store them refrigerated in the syrup in a container.
In time you need them, just arrange the fruits on dessert dishes, add a spoon of Greek yogurt, cream fraiche, or even a good quality sour cream. Then pour sauce over, garnish with apple skin or fresh mint, and serve.
Vanilla-Lavender Poached Pears and Apples
- 1 apple
- 1 pear
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 cups water
- Juice of ½ large lemon
- Zest of ½ lemon
- ½ – 1 vanilla stick
- ¼ – ½ tsp lavender flowers
Peel the pears and apples, cut them in halves, and remove the cores. Drizzle the fruits with some lemon juice. Reserve the apple skin. Using a vegetable peeler, peel the lemon zest strips from the lemon (yellow part only).
In a small but deep saucepan mix the sugar, water, lemon juice, lavender, lemon zest, and the apple skin. Cut the vanilla been in half lengthwise, scrape out the vanilla pasta, and add it to the liquid. Stir, bring to a boil, and simmer for 2 minutes.
Add the apple and pear halves into the syrup, bring to a boil, and simmer for about 10 minutes, occasionally pouring the syrup over the fruits (the exact preparation time depends on the fruit variety and ripeness). With a slotted spoon transfer the pears and apples onto a serving dish (or a container for advanced preparation).
Bring to a boil the vanilla-lavender syrup and simmer for 10-20 minutes. The syrup should thicken. Remove the zest and the vanilla.
Serve the fruit halves with the vanilla- lavender sauce and a scoop of creme fraiche, Greek yogurt or sour cream. Garnish with some apple skin.
The leftover sauce can be used with pancakes, overnight oats, yogurt, or other desserts (such as ice cream).
Cook with pleasure!